March 17 1999 1
The March 17 issue of National Speed Sport News announced the news that Donald Trump and International Speedway Corp. were hoping to build a speedway in New York City. (SPEED SPORT Archives photo)

25 Years Ago: March 1999

Editor’s Note: Each month in recognition of SPEED SPORT’s 90th anniversary, the SPEED SPORT Insider will use the National Speed Sport News archives to look back at what happened in the racing world 25 years ago.

Top Story

Trump, ISC Woo Big Apple

Millionaire real-estate developer Donald Trump and racing executive William C. France announced March 12 they are looking to build a special-events speedway in metropolitan New York. Whether it will be at Long Island’s Calverton air base or somewhere else, however, they woold not say.

“We are looking at Riverhead, but it is far — and the Long Island Expressway is on the busy side,” Trump said before some 120 news gatherers and onlookers at the Trump Tower Garden Plaza. “We are looking at five sites and there are five more to consider before we make a selection in 8-12 weeks’ time. When we do make that announcement, it will be a big day for New York, New Jersey or Connecticut.

“Our interest here is in a pretty tight geographic area to New York City,”” France said. “You don’t have to see the Empire State Building from the track, but maybe if you can jump in the air pretty high.”

France said his International Speedway Corp. bas formed a subsidiary — New York Int’l Speedway Corp. — to build Trump Superspeedway. The Trump organization will do the site analysis and selection. Track operation and naming rights will be done by ISC.

“We want to bring America’s fastest-growing spectator sport here with a state-of-the-art facility,” France said. “Having someone who knows the area aboard, like Trump, helps.”

Other News

$10 Million Super Prix Purse: In an ongoing search for a blockbuster event the sporting world will notice, CART announced the Hawaiian Super Prix — a $10 million non-points race with $5 million going to the winner. The race will be Nov. 13 and televised by pay-per-view. The top 12 drivers in CART FedEx Championship Series can earn automatic berths, with the event promoter selecting the final four entries for the event that will be run at Barber’s Point airport near Honolulu. 

Big Money TV Rights: NASCAR announced it will retain and negotiate all television, radio and other electronic media rights, beginning with the 2000 race season for its NASCAR Cup Series and Busch Series. NASCAR has negotiated television rights for the Craftsman Truck Series since its inception. Industry experts believe the move could add as much as $400 million in revenues to the sport.

Cadillac To Le Mans: Next year at the famed 24 Hours of Le·Mans, there’ll be a Cadillac sports car in the field. The new Cadillac-powered sports car will be designed and built by Riley & Scott in Indianapolis and will have a 4-liter turbocharged V-8 as its powerplant. GM Vice-President and General Manager of the Cadillac Division John Smith made the announcement.

Big Winners

Moore Turns The Tables: Greg Moore owed Michael Andretti for last year’s season-opening Marlboro Grand Prix of Miami at Miami-Dade Homestead Motorsports Complex and the young Canadian paid back CART’s winningest driver in spades. The 23-year-old Moore started from the pole, battled his way through a mishandling Player’s/lndeck Mercedes Reynard and finally streaked away to win the CART FedEx Championship Series opener before about 40,000 fans at the 1.502-mile oval.

Moore, Greg
Greg Moore (SPEED SPORT photo)

Burton Brother Act: Locked in a side-by-side battle with 14 laps to go, Jeff Burton took the high groove, surging past older brother Ward to win the Las Vegas 400 March 14 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. “That’s awful stressful,” Burton said of the final-lap duel with his brother. “I’m a big fan of Ward Burton’s. I want Ward to do well and to sit there and try to have to beat him is really hard.”

BMW’s Sebring Assault: BMW Motorsport brought its two new V-12-engined LMR spyder prototypes to the 47th Exxon Superflo 12 Hours of Sebring and collected a dominant victory in the once-around-the-clock classic. Drivers Tom Kristensen, J.J. Lehto and Jorg Muller shared the winning machine.

Davidson Nips Tyler: Derek Davidson scored a thrilling half-car-length victory over Brian Tyler as the USAC sprint car season opened at Ohio’s Eldora Speedway. Taking the lead from Tyler with rive laps remaining in the 16th Don Branson/Jud Larson Classic, Davidson narrowly edged the two-time series champion as they took the checkers side-by-side.

The Advertising Department

Mopar celebrated its first World of Outlaws sprint car victory with a full-page ad in National Speed Sport News lauding winning driver Mark Kinser, who scored the historic victory at Arizona’s Manzanita Speedway.

March 10 1999 7